One day I’m wishing Facebook, the internet, and social media was available when my girls were younger so I could have boasted about their accomplishments like I do Andrew’s (they usually beat me to it, posting faster than I can type!) and the next day I am reading about cyber bullying on the front page of the newspaper.
It’s all about the app – “After School”. It seems like this app is a forum for students to make complaints and sometimes explicit comments about one another. School staffers have been targeted with whispers of affairs with students and students have been bullied and shamed. Here’s a screen shot of the description of this app:
Yes, being curious after reading some of the articles this week in the paper I pulled it up in my app store. It’s scary from the description – “Build lasting meaningful relationships in a community built around trust and honesty.” Even the picture of the app screams “This can’t be something good for my teenager!”
Really? From the picture do you think this is something your teenager should have access to? The point – at least to these students – is to post anonymously and “vent” I guess. How does that constitute building a lasting relationship? A relationship is something you can feel, reach out and touch, a firm presence, not a blank space on the internet like a puff of cool air.
It seems students around the area and apparently all over have taken the app to a higher level – or lower – depending on how you look at it. Students and parents in many school systems have gone to the superintendent or school board with complaints of the degree of bullying and targeting of their children from others on this app. Since the app is anonymous, how do you even point fingers?
This has been running rampant around me and I was oblivious to the scandals. How did that happen? My children are grown. They are beyond this type of behavior from their friends. Most of my grandchildren are way too young for this and the ones that are old enough have not been cast into the middle of it.
Apple has supposedly taken the app off the market, but when I checked in the app store this morning it was still there along side about four more with the same lines of communication. I didn’t try to download to see if it was available. I didn’t dare! You never know who lurking behind your internet wall watching your computer, your phone, or any other kind of internet communication you may have. Do I sound loony stating that? I don’t think so.
I’m going to be careful about what I wish for because if Facebook had been around thirty years ago there is no telling how far we would be into the world of the internet now! I’m happy Facebook wasn’t to blame for this last bit of controversial social media outcry.
What are your thoughts on this app? Have you had any connection with it?